Complaint Category: None of the Above - Customer Service Complaint Issue
Complaint: The Company failed to accept their responsibility for poor word when they installed my HVAC.
The company agreed to install and start-up a customer furnished (new in the box) HVAC in my new home. This was in September, 2007. since that time, the unit has leaked R-22 Freon at the rate of more than 2# per year, meaning that I paid for Freon and service calls each time. The last service call was on June 10,2013 and they claimed to have put in 4# of Freon and charged me $418.00 dollars. I requested that they come find the leak and fix at no charge as they should have done initially but they refused.
I then borrowed a leak detector from a friend and quickly found the leak (which was obvious that it was there since installation). The leak was from a compression fitting that had never been tightened when the unit was installed. I tightened the fitting to spec. and the leak was gone!
I believe CES owes me for all those service calls since then which amount to $900.00, as listed below;
5-20-2010, $162.00 ;7-26-2011, 158.00; 7-3-2012 $162.00; 6-10-2013, 418.00
Initial Business Response
I have further reviewed Mr. *******'s customer history with Comfort Engineered Systems (CES). CES installed the HVAC systems when Mr. ******* built his home in 2007. We did have a few service visits to the home in the time shortly following the completion of construction. One for a heating issue caused by a dead bird. One for dust in the home. One for a duct issue. And Two for refrigerant leaks. In January 2008 a small leak was detected at the access port and repaired. Later in May 2008 a valve leak and a pipe leak were detected and both repaired. Mr. ******* was not billed anything for any of the above mentioned calls.
Mr. ******* called a different HVAC contractor ********* **** in May 2010, July 2011, and July 2012. Each of those calls were indeed a result of leaking refrigerant. Mr ******* was billed and paid ******** *** for each of those visits. Comfort Engineered Systems acquired ******** *** in July 2012.
Mr. ******* called CES for a service visit in June 2013. We responded to the call and indeed found that the system needed refrigerant. On that day our technician added refrigerant but did not note finding or repairing a leak. He did note that both systems were very much in need of maintenance, the coils were dirty and the pressures were rather high causing extended wear and possible leaks. The technician also noted that we should return to perform a leak search to determine the cause for the needed refrigerant. The technicians recommendations were listed on the service invoice that Mr. ******* received. It must be noted that this was the very first time that CES was contacted by Mr. ******* for any repairs since 2008, a period of five years. We most definitely treated this service visit as routine with no knowledge of the previous visits by ******** *** for the same issue.
CES did invoice Mr. ******* $418.00 for the repair, which Mr. ******* paid, along with a letter that he sent voicing his displeasure. This was the first and only invoice that Mr. ******* received from CES since the completion of his house in 2007. Our service manager responded to Mr. *******'s letter. While I do not know the exact account of their conversation, I believe that our service manager explained almost exactly what this transcription is explaining, that it was the first repair, and first invoice, that we were aware of since the initial installation in 2007. I can assume that our service manager informed Mr. ******* that CES would not return to his home to do additional work at no cost to him, as his letter demanded. It should also be noted that, upon review, some of the refrigerant leaks that are documented could be attributed to equipment issues, or issues developing over time. Not a result of poor or negligent workmanship.
CES can not be responsible for the work performed by ******** *** and the amounts paid to ******** *** prior to the July 2012 acquisition. I can also not see any poor treatment towards Mr. ******* in regards to the handling of the recent service visit or the resulting invoice for that visit. In efforts of cooperation I can offer to refund half of the $418 paid to CES, and schedule a technician to verify that Mr. ******* did in fact repair the refrigerant leak in his system. CES can not, nor should be expected to, refund $900, Of which a portion was paid to ******** ****
Again, I do agree that the visits, by CES and ******** *** combined, for the refrigerant issues are abnormal. However, the expectation that the unmaintained HVAC systems will not have any issues or associated upkeep costs for a period of over five years is unrealistic.
I will wait for a response to my offer.
Final Consumer Response
BBB spoke with Consumer today 10-11-13 and has advised that he is satisfied with the progress of the complaint and that the business has resolved the complaint to his satisfaction.
The consumer stated the file could be closed at this time.
Final Business Response
I respectfully feel that I adequately detailed the circumstances of this complaint in my first response. My company was not notified that the situation was not resolved after the first initial visits, and Mr. ******* was very quick to hire another contractor for his needs without notifying us that there was an ongoing issue. I find it questionable that Mr. ******* did not have a problem paying another contractor three years in a row for the same issue and found it acceptable that "they did not have time" to finish the repair. Now that the other contractor is no longer available, my company is being blamed for their work and our initial issue that we were unaware still existed.
My initial offer to refund half of the $418 paid to CES, and send a technician to verify the refrigerant leak has been repaired still stands. Again, I make this offer in efforts to reach a mutual compromise to rectify this situation. I still maintain that CES has handled this situation in an appropriate manner and would have repaired the leak four years ago had we known that one existed.
Consumer called and has not heard from the business regarding their resolution as of today. He has been out of town although is home as of today. BBB respectfully requests business contact consumer.
We contacted Mr. ******* and scheduled a technician to verify that the system did not still have any refrigerant leaks. We also issued a refund check to Mr. ******* for the agreed upon amount. It is my understand that the case should be fully resolved following the technicians verification that a leak is not still present.
Complaint Resolution: Company addressed the complaint issues. The consumer failed to acknowledge acceptance to BBB.